Is there a smoking gun for Oracle against Google?, Duke Nukem gets a release date, why Mozilla's blocking Skype, and more.
Google to Launch Groupon Competitor
Google's Version of Groupon Is Live: How It Works
Oops: Android contains directly copied Java code, strengthening Oracle's case
New alleged evidence of Android infringement isn't a smoking gun
Florian Mueller of FOSSPatents blog--- unearthed a pretty major bombshell: at least 43 Android source files that appear to have been directly copied from Java.
Duke Nukem Forever arrives May 3; new trailer inside
Mozilla blocks Skype add-on: caused 33k Firefox crashes in a week
Google ready for action against content farms
Google search and search engine spam
Push a Chrome extension that lets you report spam sites--may develop an algorithm to ensure low-quality sites no longer get as high of a ranking. Cutts claims Google searches reveal it's less than half of what it was 5 years ago.
IFPI: Fighting music piracy is a government job
AT&T may implement speed and data tiers for 4G LTE service
The new reaction to hackers is to embrace them. Ryan Winzen is a mod-maker who was happily working on a StarCraft 2 modification called World of StarCraft until Blizzard had the video of the game removed from Youtube. He pleaded with Blizzard for its official blessing to work on the game with that title, and.... Blizzard has reached out to Winzen to offer him a tour of their facilities, while encouraging him to continue work on the mod.
XBMC, the media center app that powers the Boxxee software now runs on the Apple A4 chip. That means, with a little jailbreaking, you can install it on new Apple TVs, iPad or iPhone, allowing you to share videos all around your home network and watch them on whatever Apple device you prefer. Go to xbmc.org for all teh details.
Mobile e-mail is growing in popularity while the use of Web-based e-mail seems to be waning, according to a new study from ComScore. Looking back at November, ComScore found that the number of people sending e-mail via a dedicated client on a mobile device was up 36 percent from the prior November. Over the same period, the number of visitors to Web-based e-mail sites fell by 6 percent
And even Motorola seems to be learning that lesson of being nice to devs. Motorola published a clarification to its bootloader policy on Facebook apologising for the feedback we mentioned yesterday, the one that essentially said ""don't like it, go somewhere else."" They also stated they are working with partners to offer bootloader solutions for devs. They did not say if they fired the person who posted the ""go wlsewhere"" advice.
Microsoft has been nice to devs, taking Windows Phone hackers onto their campus and offering them free phones. Let's see how far their patience can be tested. Developer Julien Schapman, speaking to blog Winrumors, outlined his plans to release a Windows Phone 7 ""Device Manager"" that will let users do things like side-load applications, explore the phone's file system, add custom ringtones, and manage applications.
HTC's money prospects are still going up and up. The company reports a 160 percent rise in profits year-over-year and a 31 percent increase over Q3 2010. Company CEO Peter Chou sees says it'll remain in double digits through 2011. He also admitted that HTC has a tablet int he works, though they don't plan to rush into it. So there goes the HTC tablet beats PlayBook rumours.
According to 'a very reliable source' quoted by PS3-Sense, Sony is attempting to address the problem caused by the hacking of it's PS3 by looking to what PC games do to protect themselves. Allegedly Sony's considering adding serial keys to PS3 games, that you would then get to joyously enter through your PS3's on screen keyboard.
The 10-inch Android 3.0 tablet Toshiba showed off at CES still doesn't have a name but it does have a a website! The site adds little new information, still touting a Tegra 2 processor, replaceable battery, and a 1280 x 800-resolution. You can take the snappy flash-based tour yourself at www.thetoshibatablet.com
Another virus that uses Google's URL shortener to hide itself is spreading around Twitter posing as anti-virus software. Avoid posts ending with "m28sx.html," Clicking on the link will take the user to a page that pretends to sell security software and services. Once downloaded, the virus then posts a tweet under the users account with the link in an attempt to infect his or her followers.
Kickers and Weird Science
Verizon's 'It Begins' ad plays up the iPhone wait for all it's worth (video)
Wayback machine has a new beta
Sony Reader app finally available for Android, only works with 2.2 or higher
Samsung Vibrant's Android 2.2 update now available, it seems
Sprint Premier getting new premium tier on April 1st, many customers won't get early upgrades?
Tesla confirms plans to unveil electric Model X SUV this year, $30k car by 2015
Justin?: Why buy a pentalobe screwdriver when you can make one!
I don't think Apple is using pentalobe screws to stop tinkerers, but to identify them. If Apple is going to offer warranty and Genius Bar support for their devices it's in their best interest to make sure that the problem with the device wasn't caused by hacking. With standard screws anyone could tinker with their phone, replace parts and, if they cause a problem, just put everything back the way it was and Apple wouldn't know that the user did anything. This way, you can still open the case of the phone, but Apple will know it. You can't pretend that you didn't void your warranty if you did.
Apple isn't trying to stop hackers and modders. They just don't want to have to fix the problems that hacking and modding can cause. You should have the right to open up your iPhone. You should also bear all the responsibility of fixing whatever you screw up, if you do.
Maybe not your usual beat, but perhaps of interest: dwarfing (in terms of game credibility) the already impressive acquisition of Newtoy (the studio responsible for Words with Friends and We Rule), Zynga just nabbed a very big fish: indie darling and Drop7 developer Area/Code.
When Zynga eventually rules the world (for good or ill), today will be remembered as the day that the game industry stopped sneering and starting sending their resumes.